Archive for August, 2012

A Homily/talk with the children about the Dormition. They are pretty smart!

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

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Synopsis: A Homily/talk with the children about the Dormition. They are pretty smart!


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Exegesis of Vespers readings on Transfiguration: typology and moral instruction.

Sunday, August 19th, 2012

The Transfuration by Theophanes the Cretan.LISTEN NOW

Synopsis: Exegesis of the Vespers readings (parables, paremia) for the Feast of the Transfiguration, with emphasis on typology, especially comparing the Theophanies Moses and Elijah experienced to the Transfiguration on Mount Tabor, and the significant moral instruction these events give us, when viewed in a Christian light.

Seven homilies on TRANSFIGURATION are HERE

Exodus 24:12-18 12 And the Lord said to Moses: Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and the law, and the commandments which I have written: that thou mayst teach them. 13 Moses rose up, and his minister Josue: and Moses going up into the mount of God, 14 Said to the ancients: Wait ye here till we return to you. You have Aaron and Hur with you: if any question shall arise, you shall refer it to them. 15 And when Moses was gone up, a cloud covered the mount. 16 And the glory of the Lord dwelt upon Sinai, covering it with a cloud six days: and the seventh day he called him out of the midst of the cloud. 17 And the sight of the glory of the Lord was like a burning fire upon the top of the mount, in the eyes of the children of Israel. 18 And Moses, entering into the midst of the cloud, went up into the mountain: and he was there forty days, and forty nights.

Exodus 33:11-23; 34:4-6, 8 11 And the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man is wont to speak to his friend. And when he returned into the camp, his servant Josue the son of Nun, a young man, departed not from the tabernacle. 12 And Moses said to the Lord; Thou commandest me to lead forth this people: and thou dost not let me know whom thou wilt send with me, especially whereas thou hast said: I know thee by name, and thou hast found favour in my sight. 13 If therefore I have found favour in thy sight, show me thy face, that I may know thee, and may find grace before thy eyes: look upon thy people this nation. 14 And the Lord said: My face shall go before thee, and I will give thee rest. 15 And Moses said: If thou thyself dost not go before, bring us not out of this place. 16 For how shall we be able to know, I and thy people, that we have found grace in thy sight, unless thou walk with us, that we may be glorified by all people that dwell upon the earth? 17 And the Lord said to Moses: This word also, which thou hast spoken, will I do: for thou hast found grace before me, and thee I have known by name. 18 And he said: Shew me thy glory. 19 He answered: I will shew thee all good, and I will proclaim in the name of the Lord before thee: and I will have mercy on whom I will, and I will be merciful to whom it shall please me. 20 And again he said: Thou canst not see my face: for man shall not see me and live. 21 And again he said: Behold there is a place with me, and thou shalt stand upon the rock. 22 And when my glory shall pass, I will set thee in a hole of the rock, and protect thee with my right hand, till I pass: 23 And I will take away my hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face thou canst not see. 4 Then he cut out two tables of stone, such as had been before: and rising very early he went up into the mount Sinai, as the Lord had commanded him, carrying with him the tables. 5 And when the Lord was come down in a cloud, Moses stood with him, calling upon the name of the Lord. 6 And when he passed before him, he said: O the Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, patient and of much compassion, and true, 8 And Moses making haste, bowed down prostrate unto the earth, and adoring,

1 Kings 19:3-9, 11-13, 15-16 3 Then Elias was afraid, and rising up he went whithersoever he had a mind: and he came to Bersabee of Juda, and left his servant there, 4 And he went forward, one day's journey into the desert. And when he was there, and sat under a juniper tree, he requested for his soul that he might die, and said: It is enough for me, Lord, take away my soul: for I am no better than my fathers. 5 And he cast himself down, end slept in the shadow of the juniper tree: and behold an angel of the Lord touched him, and said to him: Arise and eat. 6 He looked, and behold there was at his head a hearth cake, and a vessel of water: and he ate and drank, and he fell asleep again. 7 And the angel of the Lord came again the second time, and touched him, and said to him: Arise, eat: for thou hast yet a great way to go. 8 And he arose, and ate, and drank, and walked in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights, unto the mount of God, Horeb. 9 And when he was come thither, he abode in a cave: and behold the word of the Lord came unto him, and he said to him: What dost thou here, Elias? 11 And he said to him: Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord: and behold the Lord passeth, and a great and strong wind before the Lord over throwing the mountains, and breaking the rocks in pieces: the Lord is not in the wind, and after the wind an earthquake: the Lord is not in the earthquake. 12 And after the earthquake a fire: the Lord is not in the fire, and after the fire a whistling of a gentle air. 13 And when Elias heard it, he covered his face with his mantle, and coming forth stood in the entering in of the cave, and behold a voice unto him, saying: What dost thou here, Elias? And he answered: 15 And the Lord said to him: Go, and return on thy way through the desert to Damascus: and when thou art come thither, thou shalt anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. 16 And thou shalt anoint Jehu the son of Namsi to be king over Israel: and Eliseus the son of Saphat, of Abelmeula, thou shalt anoint to be prophet in thy room.


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For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” It seems obvious now, but will it be after years of sin?

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

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Synopsis: This is one of my most important homilies ever, and involves a very personal story. The Scripture today mentions the Second Coming of the Lord, and Jesus gives instructions that are easy to understand. Basically, He teaches that if there is time to talk about the supposed arrival of Him in the second coming, it is NOT happening. His coming will be so fast that "For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be." This scripture has always meant a great deal to me, because of hearing it long ago spoken to a person who was absolutely convinced that she could never be deceived. even though at the time she was in a sinful relationship with a man. She figured that God would forgive he when they married, and she was right; God forgives all who repent, but the question that has always been on my mind since that day is, would there come a timer, after many days, months, years of sin that a person would not longer desire to repent, and be capable of being deluded regarding things they formally understood? This is a critical question!

Matthew 24:13-28 13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. 15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) 16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: 17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: 18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. 19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! 20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: 21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened. 23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. 24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. 25 Behold, I have told you before. 26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. 27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 28 For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.


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How much do you believe in the resurrection? The Holy Seven Maccabees, Solomonia, and Eliazar

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

How much do you believe in the resurrection?

The Holy Seven Maccabees, Solomonia, and Eliazar

Commemorated Aug 1

 

 

 

The Holy Macabbees martyrs, Habim, Antonin, Guriah, Eleazar, Eusebon, Hadim (Halim) and Marcellus, their mother Solomonia and their teacher Eleazar http://www.orthodox.net/ikons/maccabees-solomonia-eliazar-aug-01.jpg



The Holy Macabbees martyrs, Habim, Antonin, Guriah, Eleazar, Eusebon, Hadim (Halim) and Marcellus, their mother Solomonia and their teacher Eleazar

 

 

The words of a virtuous woman and true mother to her sons:

 

2Ma 7:20-23  But the mother was marvellous above all, and worthy of honourable memory: for when she saw her seven sons slain within the space of one day, she bare it with a good courage, because of the hope that she had in the Lord.  (21)  Yea, she exhorted every one of them in her own language, filled with courageous spirits; and stirring up her womanish thoughts with a manly stomach, she said unto them,  (22)  I cannot tell how ye came into my womb: for I neither gave you breath nor life, neither was it I that formed the members of every one of you;  (23)  But doubtless the Creator of the world, who formed the generation of man, and found out the beginning of all things, will also of his own mercy give you breath and life again, as ye now regard not your own selves for his laws' sake.

Solomonia *believed* in the resurrection. The question all of us should ask ourselves is, would we also say these words if our children were being chopped to pieces because of our true Christian faith?  If we wonder, then we have some work to do!

We also commemorate Eliazar, the holy priest, who manfully died for the faith. Would you deny your faith in order to not be wounded in your body? Or would you *pretend* to deny it in order to escape? Eliazar was offered this option, and because of his virtue, he had great courage, and refused to even appear to deny his faith.

 2Ma 6:18-31  Eleazar, one of the principal scribes, an aged man, and of a well favoured countenance, was constrained to open his mouth, and to eat swine's flesh.  (19)  But he, choosing rather to die gloriously, than to live stained with such an abomination, spit it forth, and came of his own accord to the torment,  (20)  As it behoved them to come, that are resolute to stand out against such things, as are not lawful for love of life to be tasted.  (21)  But they that had the charge of that wicked feast, for the old acquaintance they had with the man, taking him aside, besought him to bring flesh of his own provision, such as was lawful for him to use, and make as if he did eat of the flesh taken from the sacrifice commanded by the king;  (22)  That in so doing he might be delivered from death, and for the old friendship with them find favour.  (23)  But he began to consider discreetly, and as became his age, and the excellency of his ancient years, and the honour of his gray head, whereon was come, and his most honest education from a child, or rather the holy law made and given by God: therefore he answered accordingly, and willed them straightways to send him to the grave.  (24)  For it becometh not our age, said he, in any wise to dissemble, whereby many young persons might think that Eleazar, being fourscore years old and ten, were now gone to a strange religion;  (25)  And so they through mine hypocrisy, and desire to live a little time and a moment longer, should be deceived by me, and I get a stain to mine old age, and make it abominable.  (26)  For though for the present time I should be delivered from the punishment of men: yet should I not escape the hand of the Almighty, neither alive, nor dead.  (27)  Wherefore now, manfully changing this life, I will shew myself such an one as mine age requireth,  (28)  And leave a notable example to such as be young to die willingly and courageously for the honourable and holy laws. And when he had said these words, immediately he went to the torment:  (29)  They that led him changing the good will they bare him a little before into hatred, because the foresaid speeches proceeded, as they thought, from a desperate mind.  (30)  But when he was ready to die with stripes, he groaned, and said, It is manifest unto the Lord, that hath the holy knowledge, that whereas I might have been delivered from death, I now endure sore pains in body by being beaten: but in soul am well content to suffer these things, because I fear him.  (31)  And thus this man died, leaving his death for an example of a noble courage, and a memorial of virtue, not only unto young men, but unto all his nation.

 

 

 

 

 

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A TWO-FER today. A Homily on the Gospel of the Exorcism of the Lunatic Son, and some exegesis of a passage from 1 Corinthians.

Monday, August 13th, 2012

A TWO-FER today. A Homily on the Gospel of the Exorcism of the Lunatic Son, and some exegesis of a passage from 1 Corinthians.

Synopsis: The exorcism of the lunatic son teaches us how to gain faith. There is no faith, no salvation without labor. We must understand prayer and fasting in this context. We also see that our sins CAN and DO harm others. LISTEN NOW

More homilies on the tenth Sunday after Pentecost are HERE

Matthew 17:14-23 14 And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying, 15 Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. 16 And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. 17 Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me. 18 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. 19 Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? 20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. 21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. 22 And while they abode in Galilee, Jesus said unto them, The Son of man shall be betrayed into the hands of men: 23 And they shall kill him, and the third day he shall be raised again. And they were exceeding sorry.


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Synopsis: The words of St Paul regarding Apostles MUST also apply to us! If we want honor, apparent strength or wisdom, etc, we will not be followers of Christ. If we obey the apostle and are followers of him (we must understand this – we must also live in such a way that people follow us!), we will understand true prayer and virtue in all circumstances. LISTEN NOW

 

 

1 Corinthians 4:9-16 9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men. 10 We are fools for Christ's sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised. 11 Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace; 12 And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: 13 Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day. 14 I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you. 15 For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. 16 Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.


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Jesus walks on the water and the disciples are afraid. WHY?

Monday, August 6th, 2012

miracle-christ-saving-peter-on-the-water-0

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Synopsis: When Jesus walked on the water to join the disciples in their boat, the Gospel mentioned that they were afraid – twice. When He approached, they thought they saw a spirit and were afraid, and of course, Peter became afraid when he saw the waves and felt the wind, when he was attempting to walk on the waves to Jesus. They *should not* have been afraid! The Lord had just performed a stupendous miracle, and they should have known that He would always protect them. Why were they afraid? It was for the same reasons that we are afraid, or suffer from the common modern version of fear – anxiety.

More homilies on the 9th Sunday after Pentecost are HERE

Matthew 14:22-34 22 And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away. 23 And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone. 24 But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear. 27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. 28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. 29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. 31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt? 32 And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased. 33 Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God. 34 And when they were gone over, they came into the land of Gennesaret.


miracke-christ-saving-peter-on-the-water-01

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